I am an out and proud Ravenclaw; total nerd, sassy as fuck and rather partial to a diamond encrusted diadem. I am also a Christmas lover, that annoying person who listens to Cowboys Christmas Ball ..on repeat.. in July. This combination meant that visiting the Harry Potter Studio Tour today when it has JUST been decked out in all its snow covered Christmas glory is essentially a wet dream…except Voldemort was there. Awkward.
This morning I was 100% panicking because in typical London style I was running late. I had built a 30 minute buffer into my journey but the bus, two tubes and a train just laughed and destroyed me like a horcrux. The reason I was freaking out was because entry to the Harry Potter Studio Tour is timed, and I turned up for my 12 o’clock tour at quarter past. I mean I’ve seen the punishments Umbridge metes out and I just don’t want ‘I will not be late’ permanently etched on my hand…although that may solve my perpetual lateness issue.
So I turned up in a full tizz, accidentally pushing over a small child in Slytherin robes (lol, no one accidentally pushes over a Slytherin) and told a muggle staff member my entire train drama starting from the moment I woke up. Before I even got to the funny part with the angry guy on the tube she just patted me on the shoulder and said don’t worry just go in I SWEAR I DIDN’T USE A SPELL ON HER.
The Harry Potter Studio Tour takes you through some of the ridiculously intricate sets that the eight movies were filmed on. It’s a bizarre experience to see these entire worlds that you have watched on screen, and turn up in real life to discover the fourth wall is actually a bunch of gawping tourists.
Even if you haven’t seen the movies in a few years there is something special the first time the Great Hall doors open and you step inside. Decked out for Christmas the hall is lined with Christmas trees, each topped with a flying witch because thats just how Hogwarts rolls. The tables are topped with a Christmas feast including turkeys with all the trimmings, house branded Christmas crackers and Christmas puddings that spontaneously burst into flames.
The other sets are also getting into the holiday spirit with snow falling behind each window, tinsel adorning the beds in the boy’s dormitory and the remnants of a hard Christmas lunch all over the Burrows kitchen table. I was expecting a little more snow on the outside sets (Privet Drive and the night bus) but I contented myself with a second butterbeer to make up for it (seriously Butterbeer is my ideal combination of sugar and cream).
Then came the moment we [I] had all been waiting for [desperate to Instagram]; the set model of Hogwarts covered in a fresh dusting of Christmas snow. It got emotional. Christmas and wizard emotional.
I don’t care how cynical you are, get yourself down to the Harry Potter Studio Tour and get your fill of Christmas magic. Unless you are a Slytherin in which case take your bitter heart of coal and go and rain on someone else’s Christmas parade.
And no I didn’t buy a wand. Although I really REALLY wanted to.